Exemplary Forestry launches impact fund and makes 3,000-acre acquisition

The non-profit asset manager was launched by three partners to invest exclusively in the US state of Maine.

Exemplary Forestry Management has launched an impact timberland vehicle and acquired its first asset, the 3,000-acre Scammon Ridge Headwaters property in Maine. Financial details were undisclosed.

The firm said Exemplary Forestry Investment Fund has taken commitments from private, public and philanthropic institutions but did not disclose how much capital the vehicle has raised to date. It has a $90 million target.

Exemplary Forestry Management is a non-profit asset manager launched by the New England Forestry Foundation, Maine Mountain Collaborative and Quantified Ventures to invest exclusively in the US state of Maine to improve sustainable forest management and deliver better financial outcomes.

EFIF aims to acquire approximately 100,000 acres of Maine forestry and manage it using the “climate-smart Exemplary Forestry approach developed by NEFF to improve carbon storage, long-term forest health, wildlife habitat, and sustainable timber value and production in partnership with local communities,” said a statement from the firm.

In order to facilitate the acquisition of Scammon Ridge Headwaters, Exemplary Forestry Management sold a conservation easement to the Forest Society of Maine, which “will ensure that the forest will remain available for year-round recreational activities and can continue to be managed for forest products, which bolster the regional economy,” added the statement.

New England Forestry Foundation executive director Robert Perschel commented: “I’m delighted we’ve reached this milestone after considerable research, planning and collaboration that went into crafting the Exemplary Forestry Investment Fund, which is genuinely unique in the conservation field.

“Now we’ll focus on judiciously scaling up this innovative program and building momentum, as we believe the Exemplary Forestry Investment Fund has immense potential to demonstrate to a global audience how productive, climate-smart forestry can be accomplished at scale.”

Seth Brown, vice-president at Quantified Ventures, added: “We are proud to have played a role in the development of this blended capital model to enhance the biodiversity, climate and community outcomes delivered by Maine forestlands.

“This innovative partnership and fund approach creates a new potential pathway for institutions and individuals to invest in the future of the Maine woods and support the many co-benefits that come from long-term forest health.”